VOA reported on September 21 three Xinjiang-based “re-education” camp survivors, and nearly a dozen Uyghur people held a hunger strike protest outside the White House for the U.S. government to submit a resolution to the UN on China’s human rights situation.

Their purpose was to urge China to stop arbitrarily detaining starving Kazakhs and Uyghurs.

On September 21, Rep. Chris Smith and Ambassador Kelley Currie met with three internment camp survivors—two of whom were Uyghurs, and one was Kazakh—and nearly a dozen Uyghur protestors.

VOA cited Congressman Chris Smith at the scene that he would urge the U.S. government to bring up a resolution at the UN.

According to Congressman Smith first concrete step to be done right now is to submit the resolution. They only have a few days at the United Nations to do that. And that’s not enough. 

Congressman Smith also criticized President Biden for not raising the Xinjiang genocide to the UN General Assembly on September 21. Instead, Biden just said that China had violated human rights in Xinjiang.

Congressman Smith said Biden minimized [this genocide] by his negligence. He let them down, but they hoped he would hear their voice and call Xi Jinping. And at least they should come up with a resolution to the investigation. Let the United States lead the charge; let us lead the charge.

The U.S. government has defined human rights violations in Xinjiang as genocide.

The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (UN OHCHR) published a report last month. It said that under cover of fighting terrorism and extremism, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) had committed “crimes against humanity” against Uighurs and other primarily Muslim ethnic groups.

According to ambassador Kelly Currie, Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues, when you get a strong report from the UN OHCHR that provides evidence the CCP is committing crimes against humanity in Xinjiang. There is no reason for inaction. 

VOA cited Elfidar Iltebi, president of the Uyghur America Association (UAA) and coordinator of the hunger strike, that they were glad for the support of American politicians. 

According to Elfidar Iltebi, they were on a hunger strike to raise awareness of the forced mass starvation crisis that China is implementing in the Uyghur region under the pretext of the “zero-COVID” policy. They also asked the U.S. government to prepare a resolution to raise the Uyghur issue formally at the 51st session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva from September 12 to October 7.

Since Mid-July, Xinjiang authorities have implemented a lockdown on the region.

Two weeks ago, hundreds of Uyghur citizens from Yili city, a city in northern Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, posted brief videos on Chinese platforms. Since August 1, authorities locked residents at home without access to food or medical care, leaving them with no choice except to beg for both.

Radio Free Asia reported that on September 15, 22 people died of starvation as the CCP continued to impose a COVID lockdown in Ghulja city, a northern city of Xinjiang.

VOA cited Mohammad (pseudonym), an Uyghur resident of Urumqi. He said hundreds of families in a large apartment complex were rounded up during the night and sent to makeshift quarantine facilities in the desert outside the city.

According to Mohammad, earlier this month, the government blocked the doors of their building. So then we were forced to take buses to other raw quarantine camps in rural areas.

Mohammed continued that residents begged for medical care for the sick elderly, but to no avail. They had gone through what the people of Yili faced earlier this month.

VOA cited some Uyghur residents of Urumqi, the capital of Xinjiang, who had lived without food and medical supplies for five days last week before being moved from their houses to quarantine camps set up outside the city.

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